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The impact of expanding seal populations



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locaste

Joined: 07/04/2003
Posts: 112
Location: Babylon
 posted 11/05/2010 02:25 PM  

My multiple day excursion is winding up to be a study in extreme contrasts of conditions. Arrived 0700 Wednesday morning. Perfect weather, bright sunshine, cool temps, but no wind, surf, birds, or nearby bait holding. However, plenty of hunting seals here yesterday prowling up and down just 25 yards off the surfline, they spooked the fish away from the beach. I wasn't counting on seeing them when I made the trip out here.



Today, fog, blowing rain with small craft warnings, no birds, too much surf, sitting up here in the Truck parked in the upper parking lot waiting if one of the few die-hards that have chosen to brave these conditions wind up dragging anything up here from the surf. Time will tell.



Still looking forward to making the evening Bass trip on the Viking Star.



Lou


Comments and Questions
Author Message
LateStarter

Joined: 12/29/2005
Posts: 108
11/04/2010 06:11 PM
Same for me on Tuesday-- seal was the only sign of life. Those bltzing bass sure disappeared in a hurry.



locaste
Joined: 07/04/2003
Posts: 104
Location: Babylon
11/04/2010 06:42 PM
Quote
Unsurprisingly, even the Viking Superstar called off tonight's Bass/Blues trip probably for lack of interest. Lazybones stayed tied up all day. None of the casters from the beach brought up anything from the suds to the parking lot. I was wise to avoid the cost of another night in a motel room and returned to Babylon. Looking to hit 'Moses Friday.

Lou



spark59
Joined: 09/09/2006
Posts: 16
Location: east atlantic beach ny
11/04/2010 08:03 PM
Quote
Seals have impacted the outer cape fishing for years,now they're moving south in greater numbers. Very scary for fisherman



GSBMark
Joined: 06/13/2010
Posts: 20
Location: Out trying to catch fish!
11/04/2010 10:59 PM
Take heart brave Caster!! From what I hear of reports out of Mass fish will soon be in our most eastern waters. Still plenty of bait to move south and this cold weather may push them along. Tight Lines everyone!


locaste
Joined: 07/04/2003
Posts: 104
Location: Babylon
11/05/2010 03:50 AM
Thanks Mark, you're probably correct but do I want to chance another 170 mile round trip out to Montauk after what I saw this week?

I've always regarded the presence of seals as a curiosity and an indication that the Herring are in. Since Herring are dumber than dirt, perhaps dumber than even Bluefish, seals never affected my targeting of them. This week was the first time I recognized seals as an obstruction to my agenda. You shoulda seen them just off Clark's Cove swimming in a loose formation on the surface west to east then east to west as if they were consciously herding anything that was below them.

This is turning into an interesting topic.

Lou



bassman909
Joined: 08/01/2001
Posts: 1312
Location: Jones Inlet
11/05/2010 08:59 AM
Lou,

It is an interesting topic. Seals are showing up in greater numbers everywhere. Few years back you'd see a cute couple of seals in my neck of the woods from December thru March. Now they start showing up in September, and stay till Late may, and there are more that a "couple". You should post a topic in one of the discussion boards.

How much impact are they having on stocks, or is this just natural.? Do they have any significant preditors anymore?



hauler
Joined: 03/12/2002
Posts: 2095
11/05/2010 11:33 AM
Quote
Well Great Whites had been nailing them all of August right off the beaches of Chatham, MA. They tagged more then a handful of these and data from '09's grouping showed they wintered over in Florida. More and more GW's are calling Chatham home, some up and into the harbor itself. Problem is, more seals then GW's can put away as one seal will hold them for a week or two.

Check out Cape Cod Shark Hunters online for some amazing arials. Other then GW's I don't believe they have any predators around here this time of year and GW's are long gone too IMO.



locaste
Joined: 07/04/2003
Posts: 104
Location: Babylon
11/05/2010 11:39 AM
Quote
Significant predators of seals include (of course) Great White Sharks. Perhaps we need to be aware that as seal populations continue on the rise, it will hold these sharks in closer.


locaste
Joined: 07/04/2003
Posts: 104
Location: Babylon
11/05/2010 11:44 AM
Quote
I spotted my first seal on the rocks at Oak Beach (Sore Thumb) in 1968 as a thirteen year old. 'Walked up on him surf-rod in hand and startled him back into the inlet. Now they are a relatively common vision especially on the bars inside Shinnecock inlet during the colder months. The dynamics are that the waters surrounding the Northeast are becoming healthier. We see this with the expanding population of Striped Bass.


On the north side of Montauk this week, they are the beachmasters, the ones in charge, exceeding anyone's feeble attempts to outfish them from the beach. The intent of my comments was to indicate this situation is now a factor and to hopefully save some of my fellow surfcasters the gas that I burned on my trip out there.


Lou
 
RichTrox
Noreast.com Club Member

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Joined: 10/07/2001
Posts: 4687
 posted 11/06/2010 08:05 PM  

I've also been wondering when the growth in seal population was going to start over-flowing into our area. Aren't seals a protected species? Like the Canadian Geese, maybe it's time to have an open season on them.

I understand chewing seal blubber is better for your teeth than Dentyne (really showing my age with that referenceToungue)


Check out my weekly blog at Stripers247 View from the beach
Drive your car like your life depends on it.
 
toyotaoffroad91


Joined: 06/29/2006
Posts: 1982
 posted 11/06/2010 08:08 PM  

time to grab your shotguns.....soon the LI beaches will be a great white feeding area....wonder how that will help with summer tourism? Well at least ill get to mtk faster.
 
ihavegills


Joined: 11/08/2004
Posts: 1131
Location: Oceanside
 posted 11/07/2010 08:41 AM  

Seals=worms

I've noticed a rise in the parasitic worms in meat. From stripers to fluke. I'd like to know if you've noticed more of those curly cod worm in other fillet. Not that it's a threat (that we know of yet), just very unappealing.


Night bite delight, keepin' the line tight!
 
BassTerminator


Joined: 08/04/2010
Posts: 123
 posted 11/07/2010 01:12 PM  

We need Alaskan Laws here fast!

If we do not start Seal Tournaments soon, we will become seal watchers and all the fishing boats will have to change to be Seal Expedition boats.


BluesTerminator is my Middle Name & PorgyMeister is my Nick Name!
But my friends call me FLUKESTER now!
 
negroche


Joined: 12/01/2007
Posts: 532
Location: Waist deep in Ocean
 posted 11/07/2010 01:23 PM  

Seals are definitely moving in but I hear that the "Bark" will take over our shores in a few years causing mass destruction to the seals, humans and fish together..

 
likeitreallyis


Joined: 10/28/2005
Posts: 16948
Location: Rolling in the deep....
 posted 11/08/2010 02:51 PM  

the population is not the main issue, the predominate hunting grounds for seals are the Gulf of Maine, however overfishing for herring has decimated the inshore stock and the seals are traveling further and further in search of food., The main issue here is lack of food, not an exploding population.. The herring trawlers need to be moved out of the inshore feeding zones...






Green Grass and High Tides forever,,,
 
RichTrox
Noreast.com Club Member

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Joined: 10/07/2001
Posts: 4687
 posted 11/08/2010 07:41 PM  

Negroche - nice avatar.

I'll never turn my back on a sea bird again.surprise


Check out my weekly blog at Stripers247 View from the beach
Drive your car like your life depends on it.
 
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